Friday, August 24, 2012

Readers questions answered


                                   Who is Sheridan Dupre?

A lover. A husband. A father.

Sheridan Dupre is none of these things.

He does, however, have a proud lineage.

He is of the Abbeville, South Carolina Duprees, and a distant relation to Frank Dupree, who shot a policeman in cold blood.

He is the great, great grandson of Giovanni Dupre, Sienese sculptor.

He is the nephew of Jacqueline Du Pre, cellist.

He is the godson of Louis Dupre, Catholic phenomenologist.

He is the cousin of Ashley Dupre, high class escort and downfall of Gov Spitzer.

He was named after the Sheridan Expressway, where he was conceived of by Robert Moses.

He has no middle name that he is aware of.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Dupre Vs Chekhov, Round 1, in which I review Uncle Vanya and Chekhov reviews me

             Sheridan Dupre on Anton Chekhov
I've now seen a couple productions of Uncle Vanya in the last month or so, and I must say I'm not impressed.  I know that some of the blame may be due to the actors and whatnot, but still, they have to go with what this guy wrote, and it's just not that much.  I mean the whole Yelena and Astrov thing never really comes alive, nor do I even believe Yelena and Professor.  I mean, I don't even think the Professor is that smart, but she's all like I fell in love with him cause of his brains.  Chekhov should have done something to increase his recognition and celebrity, like put a big bust of the professor on stage - or on the cover of the book - so when he comes on everyone's like, hmmm where have I seen that dude before? Isn't he famous?

And then what's the deal with after the shooting scene, everyone just moves on so quickly.  Like Sonya's like, oh, Uncle Vanya just tried to [spoiler alert!] shoot my stepdad, but it's cool.  And then what about the scene near the end where the Professor, who in the scene just before was on his frickin' death bed, comes on stage all sprightly giving people advice and stuff.  Do something with your lives!  That's his big advice?!  Not, hide the gun from your Uncle Vanya, he's a depressed maniac?  And Astrov's all like (in his sexy voice), give me my morphine back Vanya, and yet no one confiscates the gun?!  At least not in the productions I saw.  And I highly doubt it's in the book.  That's vintage Chekhov sloppiness.  Come on, doc!

And then it gets all preachy, like at the end with Sonya going on and on, about working and resting.  I was like, Wrap it up already!  I have a long commute and I want to get some rest!

There are some yuks, definitely, and the nature stuff seems relevant, but still. 2/5 stars.

Anton Chekhov on Sheridan Dupre
I would rather live in deep dark Siberia and yet feel myself a man of moral worth, than to live one day in Sheridan Dupre's decadent boots with his reputation of a drunkard and a scoundrel. 0/5 stars.

Friday, August 03, 2012

I've heard that bird before...

Below, I allude to certain flatulent birds.  Here is the documentary proof.  This illegal video was taken at the Arktikum, at a little kiosk which allowed you to press on an image of a Laplandish bird and hear its call.  Imagine our surprise when one of these birds, perhaps of the Chief Leftus family, sounded just like us!  There are moments of wonderful recognition, generous understanding, in which you realize - birds, they're not that different than you and me.

Memories from Finland (well, the not very well documented ones from the first three days before I dropped my brother's camera at 4 in the morning on an unforgiving Rovaniemi Street)

You join us here at this inexplicably large wooden picnic table in the heart of Santa Claus's village at approximately 1 AM.  Imagine Christmas music piped through loudspeakers on a midsummer's eve over grounds vacant but for the odd late night tourists who come out to photograph themselves crossing the well-marked arctic circle line.

Ah, yes. Here we are in a taxi, headed back from downtown Rovaniemi at approximately 4 AM.  Is that the sunset or the sunrise? You may as well be asking yourself the riddle of the sphinx, my friend.  For that way madness lies!

The Arktikum, Rovaniemi's foremost cultural museum, chock full of information on the Sami people, the history of Lapland, and flatulent birds. Also staffed by the most attractive women north of the Arctic Circle.

This dramatic photo shows our shadows falling across the Arctic Circle as we prepare for the race.

We've moved on to Tampere, a city some 8 hours south  (by train, through some of the more relentlessly consistent forested scenery in the world) of Rovaniemi. It rained when we arrived, which fit its industrial moodiness.

We were the only two people in the history of Finland to try to actually enter this impressive Church (and we couldn't - we were too early).

A signage vignette in Tampere.

Ahhh, summer [book]!  This was taken in Talinn, Estonia. Those A Le Coq beers are honeyed deliciousness!

More photos, and maybe a video or two, to come dear readers!